In the Vietnamese province of Quảng Ninh, 99 miles out of Hanoi, Life Heritage Resort Ha Long Bay has launched the latest generation of luxury, with its fleet of 22 heritage-style junks, each a floating four-star hotel room. On six-hour day cruises from $220, your clients can create their own itinerary aboard their private vessel, crewed by a captain, engineer and cruise host acting as butler.
Following a check-in at Life Resort's private, land-based hub at Tuan Chau Island, the boats, measuring 49 feet in length with a 15-feet beam, will set sail across Hạ Long Bay. In the fully furnished, 344-square-foot cabin, local touches complement carved hardwood detailing and panoramic windows looking out onto the water and limestone karst formations for which the bay is known. In the timber-style cabin featuring an en suite bathroom, air conditioning and heating, your clients can enjoy the LCD television, CD/DVD player and a selection of board games.
On board, guests can dine on the covered dining terrace. Afternoon tea is served, and a set lunch for two includes Life Resort's international menu, wines and chilled beverages, pre-ordered before boarding. During the cruise, your clients can take to the upper deck's sun beds for two, or the boat's kayaks, snorkeling equipment and fishing gear.
On the water, we hear the Dau Go Cave (Wooden Stakes), the Thien Cung Grotto (Heavenly Palace); Bo Nau Cave (Pelican) and Sung Sot Cave (Surprise Cave) are remarkable, as are the floating fish markets, hidden grottos and seculded beaches of the bay, a UNESCO World Natural Heritage Site, translated literally to "Descending Dragon Bay."
Clients in the know will appreciate that the boats are powered by WEICHAI engine with maximum speed of 10 knots; built and operated to Certified Marine Standards, they also meet Vietnam's shipping registry requirements, VIRES, and are equipped with modern maritime emergency features. On the Horizon: look for the addition of overnight voyages.